It's disappointing to see racism on a football pitch making an unwelcome return in the 21st century. But I thought Yaya Touré did exactly the right thing aganst CSKA Moscow, only to be badly let down by the referee.
Yaya complained about monkey noises coming from the crowd during the match and there's nothing more you can do as a player in that situation. I don't believe walking off the pitch is the right thing to do because you need to go through the correct procedures. When I was playing, it never crossed my mind to walk off, even when it seemed like the whole stadium was hurling racial abuse at me.
But having been told what was was going on (and presumably having heard it with his own ears), the referee had to take action. Officials are given clear guidelines about what to do in this situation so if they haven't done their jobs properly there should be an investigation and the referee should face the music. They are the people who are supposed to be protecting players when they are on the pitch after all.
Now it's up to Uefa to take this issue seriously. The governing bodies have to come up with a strong enough deterrent to stop racism. That doesn't seem to be the case at the moment because it keeps on happening. Things have come a long way since the 1970s but when racism does rear its head, it has to be stamped on quickly. Clubs need to be given a clear signal that this sort of behaviour is unacceptable in this day and age.
I'm not sure exactly what sort of punishment there should be because they've tried fines in the past and that hasn't worked. We need to find something that is going to hit these clubs hard where it hurts. Russia is meant to be hosting the World Cup in five years so it's not a great advert for them or Fifa.Reuse content